Both Wellington and Christchurch will host 2011 World Cup quarter-final matches.
Auckland has been assigned the final, semis, as well as the third-place play-off. It was feared Eden Park would also receive two quarters, and the emphasis would be too heavily placed on the North Island if the Westpac Stadium got the other two. But this move ensures both the North (Wellington) and South Islands (Christchurch) will be widely involved, with Auckland remaining the centre of major activity.
The move to have two cities hosting the quarters aids ticketing, accommodation and travel logistics. These matches will be hosted on 7, 8 and 9 October.
“This decision gives fans in the Wellington and Christchurch regions something really special to look forward to in 2011. The quarter-final weekends in both cities will be tremendous sporting and festival occasions,” said Martin Snedden, CEO, Rugby New Zealand 2011 Ltd.
“Each region has shown a strong desire to help us deliver a world class tournament and also to deliver a memorable national Rugby World Cup festival which realises our ‘Stadium of four million’ philosophy and which carries with it a uniquely Kiwi flavour.”
The venues for pool matches will be confirmed by March or April next year, while team bases will be announced later in the year.